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Tech News Today 155: Windows Phone, The Phantom Menace

by TWiT

Published January 11, 2011

Google drops H.264, iPad coming to Verizon, yeah that's right, iPad, and why AMD is in bad shape.

Run time 54:40
Producer TWiT
Audio/Visual sound, color
Language English


Tom Merritt
Scott Johnson
Andy Beach
Jason Howell


Top Stories

Verizon to Sell Apple IPad That Connects Directly to Its Network
Should you buy a Verizon iPhone? Your questions answered
Will Verizon’s iPhone Have an Off-Cycle Refresh Every Year?
iPhone to cost Verizon billions this year
Pics of the new antenna, WiFi sharing prefs on Verizon iPhone
Verizon iPhone first hands-on! (update: video)

Google reveals plan to remove H.264 support from Chrome
Google's taking a page from Apple's book. They really really really want you to use WebM for all your videos, sooo, in the next couple months Chrome will drop support for H.264 video when using the VIDEO tag on your website, and instead support WebM and Theora. Google says this brings them more in line with the Chromium project.

Intel settles with chip maker Nvidia for $1.5bn
Intel/NVIDIA bombshell: two rivals team up

Discussion Stories

Hot Swap at the Top: AMD CEO Out
AMD Meyer axed as CEO
AMD Seeks New CEO Who Can Challenge Intel, Tackle Tablet-Computer Market

T-Mobile UK says mobile Internet isn't fit for "downloading," gaming or video
Changes to Mobile Internet fair use policies
T-Mobile UK cost chart (note the recommendation of YouTube)
T-Mobile UK cuts 'fair use' allowance to 500MB, sends you home to watch online video
T-Mobile Slashes Fair Use Policy, Says Download At Home

MySpace Cuts 47 Percent Of Its Workforce

Supreme Court: Record Labels Must Face Digital Music Antitrust Suit
Supreme Court: online music price-fixing lawsuit can proceed
Canadian Recording Industry To Pay $45 Million To Settle Class Action Over Copyright Infringement

News Fuse

We mentioned last week the report from Paul Thurrott about Windows Phone 7 sending mystery data that runs up the data count and in some cases causes people to pass their monthly allowance. Microsoft has finally acknowledged the issue telling BBC News that it is investigating why some handsets running its Windows Phone 7 software are sending and receiving ""phantom data"".

A coalition of public interest groups asked federal regulators on Tuesday to investigate whether new mobile internet plans from MetroPCS violate open-internet rules passed in late 2010. The plans offer “unlimited web usage” but MetroPCS’s terms exclude video sites other than YouTube from “unlimited web usage,” and block the use of internet-telephony services such as Skype and Tango.

Nintendo may be overdoing it in warning against 3DS use by young kids. he American Optometric Association released a statement last week asserting that 3D viewing "may actually help uncover subtle disorders that, left uncorrected, often result in learning difficulties." Not only that, but the 36,000-strong group suggested "children younger than six can use the 3DS in 3D mode if their visual system is developing normally."

The new World of Warcraft expansion Cataclysm has sold 4.7 million unit sales since its launch on December 7, Blizzard Entertainment, a division of Activision Blizzard announced today. Blizzard said that based on its internal estimates, the milestone has helped the title reach a new record for monthly PC game sales. 3.3 Million of the sales came on the first day making it the fastest selling PC game too.

Intel will integrate DirectX 11 graphics technology in its next generation of laptop and desktop chips based on the Ivy Bridge architecture, a company executive revealed at CES. AMD has already implemented DirectX 11 in its Fusion low-power chips. Intel expects to start shipping Ivy Bridge chips with DirectX 11 support to PC makers late this year.

A security researcher has tapped Amazon's cloud computing service to crack Wi-Fi passwords in a fraction of the time and for a fraction of the cost of using his own gear. Thomas Roth of Cologne, Germany told Reuters he used custom software running on Amazon's EC2 service to break into a WPA-PSK protected network in about 20 minutes. With EC2 computers available for 28 cents per minute, the cost of the crack came to just $1.68.

We're number one! The United States is responsible for 18.8% of the world's Spam according to security firm Sophos. India came in second with 6.88%. And don't worry, we'll maintain our lead in spite of the reports of declines in spam. Turns out the Rustock botnet that turned off in December is back online as of January 10. USA! USA! USA!

Your LTE phone could knock off your cable TV according to UK research firm Ofcom. Frequencies that used to be reserved for broadcasting analogue TV, will next year be up for auction and are expected to quickly fill with 4G (LTE) signals. Cable TV uses the same frequencies squeezed down a wire, but if the LTE signal is strong enough it can sneak into the wire too, generating interference and forcing you to cut the cord.

GTVHacker has a thirteen-step walkthrough to cracking the Logitech Revue, which does involve opening the case and doing a bit of soldering, after which point custom firmware can let it download, install and run apps from Android Market and bypass pesky television network blockages.

A plan to create a consortium led by Microsoft to buy Novell patents has been withdrawn. Early in December Microsoft, Apple, EMC and Oracle notified the German regulator that they planned to form CPTN Holdings with a view to purchasing 882 of Novell's patents. But the filing was withdrawn (Rücknahme) on Dec. 30. No reason was given for the withdrawal by German authorities.

Kickers and Weird Science

Google Goggles gets barcodes, print ads, and Sudoku solutions


Court hears Winklevoss twins' Facebook settlement case
Indonesia puts RIM on two-week notice
Assange extradition hearing set for February 7 and 8
Assange Could Face Execution Or Guantanamo Bay
Report: Jobs, Murdoch Unveiling iPad Mag Jan. 19
Hank Chien Reclaims Donkey Kong High Score


Anonymous: Happy about the Verizon iPhone announcement


"Hey Tom, Jason, and everyone else who's there today,

I'm seeing a lot of coverage on the new Droid Atrix, but almost everyone seems to miss the feature that seems to be the most significant to me: the fingerprint sensor on the top of the back. To my knowledge, this is the first consumer smartphone in the United States with this level of biometric security. I think this actually makes many features of the smartphone far more realistic, such as mobile banking, mobile shopping, etc.- I currently use my iPhone for these tasks, but the security code is too cumbersome and easy to steal. This new feature on the Atrix might be enough to make me ditch Apple for my next phone.

Love the show!

Mike the chip designer in FL"

"Hey there hopefully-fully-rested TNT Crew,

First, thanks a lot for all the CES coverage. I look forward to watching the 3 HOUR special in iTunes.

I saw Tom and Brian review the 3D laptop that tracked your eye movement. I wonder if audio companies will come up with similar technology for *ear* tracking. I hate that you still have to precisely position surround sound speakers in order to get accurate surround sound. It would be great if you can just get them around the right location, then a sensor tracks every person's head. That way, every person can hear in surround no matter where they are in the speaker field.

Thanks! As always, keep up the fantastic work. - Jason from near Rochester NY"


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